The press plays a critical role in India. Throughout the twentieth century, India’s media have participated in the Freedom Movement, generated response to famine and disaster, and strengthened Indian democracy. India’s constitutional commitment to women’s leadership in their village councils is the next unfolding of human freedom and development in India.
[spoiler]The press are now making another important contribution through accurate and increased coverage of the historic process of women’s participation in local government, including their battles to achieve hard-won successes.
Given the critical role of the press in this historic process, The Hunger Project is committed to supporting and encouraging the press to energetically and prominently report the breakthroughs and success stories of women’s leadership.
The Sarojini Naidu Prize annually honors three journalists for outstanding reporting on women in Panchayati Raj (local government). The awards are presented in each of three categories:
Best Hindi-Language Reporting
Best English-Language Reporting
Best Reporting in other languages
In recognition of the importance placed by Mahatma Gandhi on Panchayati Raj and the full participation of women in public life, the award is presented on Mahatma Gandhi’s birthday each year in New Delhi.
Sarojini Naidu (1879-1949) was a poet of repute and an orator and was popularly known as the “Nightingale of India.” A close associate of Mahatma Gandhi, she was a prominent leader of the freedom movement and was president of the Indian National Congress in 1925. After independence, she became the first woman governor of an Indian state.